45/70 on steroids

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by J E Custom, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Every now and then a wild cat just makes sense for certain game and when looking
    for something special a wildcat may be the only way to go.

    Even though I normally avoid wildcats because of there extra needs this was the only way
    A close relative of mine and I could achieve the desired results.

    The 45/70 brass is fairly light if loaded hard. so we looked at the 450 marlin and it did not measure up to the requirements so we decided to use the 458 winchester mag as a parent
    case for these reasons=

    They are heavy and strong cases, and in this case the belts are a good feature.

    In order to get this cartrige in a short action we shortened the care to 2.250 giving it a overall loaded length of 2.750 to fit in a short action magazine and named it the 458 short mag.

    The reamer was cut to 2.285 because it head spaces on the belt. And a 458 Win Mag will
    not chamber even single loaded.

    The project was developed to push a 410grain bullet to 2150 ft/sec out of a short action
    with a magnum bolt face. And a 325 gr to 2400 ft/sec for 4150 ft/lbs of energy without heavy
    loads (Around 50,000 CUPs).

    The rifle was built for heavy cover bear and hog hunting and with a 23" barrel is very handy.

    Loading is strait forward simply trim the brass to 2.250 and load using standard 458 dies.

    I know that this is not a long range rifle but I though it was worth mentioning because of all
    the bear hunters and hog hunters on this site.

    The rifle has not taken any game yet but after some load developing we will try it out on
    some big pigs.

    With almost a 1,000 ft/lbs more energy than the 444 marlin and 800 ft/lbs more than the
    450 marlin it should really be a stopper. and best of all in a nice short rifle that is very
    handy.

    I'm sure we are not the first to do this but it seemed like a good idea and is very simple
    to do (I subscribe to the KISS theory) to "keep it simple".

    Just though I would share this build with the members.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  2. ROBSTER

    ROBSTER Well-Known Member

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    444
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    JE,
    Were`s one for you I took the ultra mag case cut it off at the shoulder and loaded 375 grain barnes s&w 500 copper hollow points at a hundred yards it has over 2100 f/lbs and goes through rail road ties with no problem
     
  3. Aldon

    Aldon Well-Known Member

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    Are the 444 and 450 the most powerful rounds one can get in a lever action?

    Is it plausible to customize a lever action for either of these wildcats?

    I have been considering a 444 as I started out with a 30-30 and have an affinity for a lever action so wish to add one to the arsenal.

    But something different would be nicer yet:)
     
  4. Tyler Kemp

    Tyler Kemp SPONSOR

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    I think about 45-70 blown to 475 is about tops in a normal lever action.
     
  5. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Ether the 444 or the 450 marlin would be a great choice in a lever gun !!!!

    I have several 444s and they are power houses and the marlin lever gun is a good
    one.

    How ever The lever guns do have there limits and I think the 444 or 450 are
    about it.

    The new Hornady Leverevolution bullets has definitely improved the performance and
    the ballistics of the lever guns.

    The 458 short mag is a little intense for the leaver guns and was designed around a
    short action bolt rifle with the potential of 60,000+ pressures.

    The best leaver guns are held to around 45,000 PSIs.

    But if your looking for something more powerful that a 30/30 then ether the 444 or the 450
    will be a big step up and you won,t be dissapointed in ether.

    I have killed many deer and hogs with a 444 contender and it is amazing how it puts them
    down.

    Also ether the 444 or 450 are factory rounds and rifles are made for them.
     
  6. ROBSTER

    ROBSTER Well-Known Member

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    444
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    Wild West Guns in alaska makes the 458alaskan and the 50 alaskan with marlin levers.
     
  7. buffalorancher

    buffalorancher Well-Known Member

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    We have killed a lot of buffalo with all of these rounds. The 444 and 45-70 factory ammo isn't real great but it works. Now you handload these and they get very effective real fast but the recoil can get brutal for some people. It also amazes me how well hard cast bullets can work at decent velocities. Of course a 325 gr bullet at 2400 fps would work really well too.
     
  8. Aldon

    Aldon Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Robster...now you have gone and done it.

    I got the fever bad! LOL

    A 50 lever action!

    Now I just have to figure our how to scrounge that much green up without having to sell any of the guns I have already!

    Sweet!

    Wild West Guns - The Alaskan CoPilot
     
  9. ROBSTER

    ROBSTER Well-Known Member

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    Aldon,
    Shoot the 50 once last year love the gun and levers in general but I`m in the same boat what project firstgun)
     
  10. buzzgun

    buzzgun Well-Known Member

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    Buddy of mine killed a tuskless cow elephant with a Marlin converted to 50 Alaskan........it worked fine.
     
  11. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    J E Custom, sounds like it's gonna be one hell of a stopper. Any pics of your 458 Short Mag next to the parent case?
     
  12. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I'm not able to post pictures on my piece of junk but it is just 1/4" shorter than a
    458 win mag.

    PS ; we also looked at the Alaskans but they were rimed and as you know they don't work
    as well in a bolt action as a belted or rimless case does.

    There is a 2" 458 wild cat but it essentially has the same case capacity as a 45/70 and we
    wanted more.

    Don't know how well it stacks up against the rimed 50s in a leaver gun but I have to think
    it will edge them out because of the higher working pressures of the case and the bolt action

    But it was not intended to best any thing just fill a niche for a short well handling rifle with
    lots of stopping power and with the right bullet decent range (400 to 500yards).

    J E CUSTOM
     
  13. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    Not fair to tease and then no pics to please...only kidding:D. Keep us posted.
     
  14. Tyler Kemp

    Tyler Kemp SPONSOR

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    To be honest, Ruger level loads in something other than a lever action can achieve these velocities at around 50,000psi pressures. I'm sure the 458 brass would be stronger however.